City Council approves Emerging Capital Needs Program

Earlier this week the Winston-Salem City Council approved $3 million for the construction of a new Belview Community Center in the Southeast Ward.

City Council approves Emerging Capital Needs Program
April 18
00:05 2019

Residents in the Belview community will soon have a new recreation center to call their own.

During a meeting on Monday, April 16, the Winston-Salem City Council voted to approve $3 million for the construction of a brand new Belview Community Center. The funds for the new community center is part of the council’s newly adopted Emerging Capital Needs Program which is designed to address the needs of the city that were presented by the mayor and city council earlier this year. Most of the projects on the Emerging Capital Program will be paid for with $20 million in capacity for other financings such as limited obligation bonds, the 2018 bonds approved by citizens last November, two-thirds bonds, and leftover funds from the Union Station project.

For the past few months city council member and representative of the Southeast Ward, James Taylor, who is also co-owner of The Chronicle, has been urging residents of the Southeast Ward to get behind the project and show their support. The plan for the new community center includes the demolition of the existing center, outdoor basketball courts, playground and parking lot.

The new facility is expected to include a gymnasium, classroom and workspace for the city’s S.O.A.R. (Successful Outcomes After Release) program and YouthBuild programs, computer lab, meeting space for community groups, new playground, and improved lighting inside and outside of the facility. 

Other projects included in the Emerging Capital Needs Program are: improvements to Bowman Gray Stadium, Long Creek Park development, pedestrian safety projects, new city-county parking deck, Liberty Plaza-Kaleideum, bankruptcy court property acquisition, East Ward resurfacing, Meadowlark Drive widening, Novack Street bridge replacement, several recreation maintenance projects, and the replacement of roofs on City Hall and the Bryce A. Stuart Building.

In total, the projects will cost around $33 million.

When it came time to vote on the projects listed, everyone seemed to be on board except for Councilman Robert Clark who represents the West Ward. Before casting his vote against the ordinance amending the project budget, Clark said, “… I could not in good conscious spend $1.7 million in taxpayers’ money to buy a building we do not need and tear it down.”

Councilman Taylor took to Facebook to let residents know about the new community center. He said, “This is what happens when we stand together and fight for what we deserve in our city. The Southeast Ward continues to move forward and we’re taking everybody with us.”

In other business, the City Council also approved a resolution establishing an African-American Heritage Action Initiative Committee. The goals of the committee will include connecting all sectors of the African-American community and creating a vision for incorporating African-American contributions into the ongoing history of the city. The committee will meet quarterly or as needed and will consist of nine residents, serving staggered terms of three years.

Mayor Allen Joines also recognized the 2019 Class of City of Winston-Salem University (CWSU). CWSU is a 12-week course which meets once a week. The purpose of the course is to give citizens a better understanding of city government and the various city departments.

Members of the 2019 Class are: Jean Alsup, Bonny Bernat, Shakira B. Bethea, Artenia H. Boyce Kanika Brown, Money Caldwell Cannon, Joe Cassidy, Mackenzie Cates Allen, Mary Clark Jackson, Linda B. Hill, Benjamin K. Hodge, LaShawn Nicole Howard, Sandra Keeney, Jaquae Perkins, Santiago Ramos, George S. Redd IV, Phillip Skipper, Melissa Vickers, Pam C. Webb, and Terry Zhu.

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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